North American Scholar

CHITWOOD, Ava (née Deborah Jean Tipton C.)

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  • Date of Birth (YYYY-MM-DD): 1953-12-17
  • Born City: Charlottesville
  • Born State/Country: VA
  • Parents: Dr. Edward, a surgeon & Sarah Roberts C., a pediatrician
  • Date of Death (YYYY-MM-DD): 2012-11-01
  • Death City: Tampa
  • Death State/Country: FL
  • Education:

    B.A. University of Massachusetts, 1982; M.A., Johns Hopkins, 1983; Ph.D, 1993.

  • Professional Experience:

    Instr. classics, U. Maryland, Baltimore County, 1989-93; asst. prof. classics, Notre Dame, 1993-94; U. Florida, 1996-97; asst prof. Dept. World Languages, University of South Florida, 1997-2001; assoc. prof. 2001-12.

  • Dissertation:

    “Deaths of the Greek Philosophers” (Johns Hopkins, 1993).

  • Publications:

    “The Death of Empedocles,” AJP 107 (1986) 175-91; “Heraclitus αἰνικτής: Heraclitus and the Riddle,” SCO 43 (1993) 49-62; Death by Philosophy: The Biographical Tradition in the Life and Death of the Archaic Philosophers Empedocles, Heraclitus, and Democritus (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2004) REVS: Phronesis 50,4 (2005) 337-340 Jaap Mansfeld; CR n.s. 56, 2 (2006) 286-287 Simon Trépanier.

  • Notes:

    Ava Chitwood’s dissertation explored the relationship of Diogenes Laertius’s accounts of the deaths of philosophers Heraclitus, Empedocles, and Democritus with their philosophical works. She later expanded this work into her 2004 book. Her more general interests encompassed Greek civilization and classical mythology. In addition to a complement of language courses, she taught a variety of courses designed to appeal to non-Classics students, such as courses in medical terminology and film. Students commented on the enthusiasm, learning and skill she brought to the classroom. She was honored by USF after a decade of service and was named an honorary “coach” by the athletic department for her services in educating athletes. At one memorial service for her, students lit candles and poured a libation in honor of her favorite goddess, Athena.

  • Sources:

    The Oracle (USF) (8 November 2012).

  • Author: Ward W. Briggs, Jr.